Raising Frugal Kids In a Materialistic Society?
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    Default Raising Frugal Kids In a Materialistic Society?

    Raising Frugal Kids In a Materialistic Society?-frugalkids.jpg

    When I was growing up my parents did an amazing job of teaching me the value of money. If I wanted a pair of designer jeans, they explained that they would be more than willing to buy me basic jeans, but if I felt I wanted something more than that, I would need to get a job to pay the difference. After blowing a whole paycheck (on teen wages) it didn't take me long to learn that maybe I didn't actually NEED the designer jeans.

    How do you teach kids the value of a dollar?

    Do you hide money challenges from kids or explain the reason behind needing to live on a budget?
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    It's tough seeing kids have so many toys that they need a separate bedroom or the basement to house them all. My grandson has more toys than he'll ever play with and continually gets more from aunts, uncles and grandparents.

    So, I always put money in his account because of the sheer number of toys he has.

    So, as is evident from this one little boy, it seems we are creating a materialistic society from the get go.
    ~Russ

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    Registered User sunshine's Avatar
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    We had the kids pick angel tree kids at Christmas and purchase gifts for them, we had the kids volunteer at nursing homes, etc.

    We had honest and open discussions about budgets and why we chose to spend our money the way we do - and how other's choices were not necessarily wrong, but different than ours.

    We also started early with their own budget plans -- any money the received, as gifts, working etc. was divided into tithe, long term savings, short term savings and spend now (the smallest portion)

    We would discuss at the grocery store various prices and how advertisers try to hook you to buy their products. I distinctly remember one conversation with my dd when she was about 10. . . we were looking at baby foods and how one tiny jar of pureed bananas cost .69 and how we could buy a pound of bananas for .29/lb and mash our own.

    We also would discuss the massive amount of waste in the USA, and how consumerism has contributed to that, and the effects on the economy, and earth. . . my kids learned early on, it was cheaper to buy clothing at thrift stores and many times they got better quality and more items than if we purchased new (some items at the thrift stores still had tags on them). . .

    So I guess it mostly comes down to modeling the characteristics of frugality ourselves, and lots of discussions about the how/why/effects of frugality vs spendthrift.

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    I taught paige the value of a dollar..by teaching her t hat is jealous cost 70 I had to work 7 hours to pay for them.. I also gave her an allowance. She had an allowance she had to save some of it and had to pay for part of it. This was big purchases. She got 10 a week grocery money so she had to budget ft o r what she wanted.. she is an adult uses coupons, shops clearance, shops sales with coupons, her only debt is educational I think I done pretty good

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    Blue jeans cost 70 dollars. .I hate auto corect

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    well good news for the parents of younger ones-it stuck!
    DD is great w/ her friends tutoring on coupons and resale. They teach her how to make freezer jam.
    The whole time they were growing up it was hard to "compete" w/ the values of folks out here buying their kids everything. But like Dd said -those kids kinda imploded w/ out Daddy's money and no skills to make do and think outside the box to save.
    So take heart as they say and carry on.

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    it "stuck" for our kids too. . . oldest is married with no debt other than his 20 year mortgage, which is over half paid off (he bought his house when he was 19). Middle son is married and military. . . has his mortgage and his wife's student loans, but no other debt. Dd is getting married and she and her fiance have no debt other than their house.

    They all 3 are frugal and married frugal people as well.

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    Although I don't have kids, I really appreciated being raised around a family that was ultra-frugal. Having witnessed their lifestyle over the years & major success of living on a modest income, I embrace minimalism.

    When a kid can understand his or her friends are only a few dollars short each month of not being able to cover the light bill because of all the neato toys & expensive clothing, I think a well-informed child could look at clearance rack or thrift store clothing, used toys, older electronics & library as a way to create a secure future by not spending it on useless frills. Pride comes from not discussing this with the others & just observe in some situations that could make a child feel self conscious....Realize many states have cut any welfare help to almost nothing and charities frequently are unable to help when rent or utility assistance is needed....Building savings by spending conservatively is only way to assure ability to cover all living expenses if anything happens like illness or unemployment. If kids have this pointed out early in life, 'why we don't live like the Jones', I think the message actually reduces stress and provides opportunity to build self confidence. While showing the kids the homeless shelter & soup kitchen later gets kids to start to worry aloud about their money security causing panics.

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    We were very transparent about family expenses with our children from little on. They understood that we had to pay insurance, property taxes, groceries, etc. I think that helped them be more realistic with their wants.

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    I taught my son the value of money at a very early age. He went shopping with me the first time when he was just two days old. I tried to teach him that you had to save to get something that you want rather than wanting instant gratification. He has never really asked for something that he knows we could not afford. He was also not the type of kid that would ask for money to hang out with his friends. At 26, he owns his own home and has no debt. His wife on the other hand came from a poor family. They did not teach her how to manage money well. She does know how to coupon, but she definitely needs to work on the instant gratification area. I am hoping that they will soon be balanced.

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    My kids grew up watching my frugal ways. I've tried to teach them basic financial things, like need vs want, saving, they are getting older so I've planted the 401k seed with them with the hopes they will contribute from day one as they eventually make it into the working world. I've tried to show them if you start early, you will go farther. They're not quite getting this, they are in HS, they get the need to save for retirement young, so that's a start. DD used to help me coupon, have not been doing that lately. I give them money for clothes and after watching me stretch a clothing dollar till it bleeds, has rubbed off on them and try to find the best way to get more stuff for less. They had some expensive stuff, like electronics, but only for Christmas and if the item is expensive, more family members go in on it so they end up with not a lot to open. Never been a problem.

    I've tried really hard to be fairly open with my finances, not what I earn but how I use what I earn. I watch for ways to save, calling cell companies and cable to get lower deals. I bought just about the least expensive car I could get and paid it off quickly. I teach them about paying credit card bills in full each month. I taught them never to plan on relying on a partner, people separate all the time. You need to have a career that produces enough to live on. Don't jump into marriage young, establish your career, get your own apt., live life independently before jumping into anything. I got married at 24, divorced at 34. If I hadn't kept up my nursing career, I do not know what I would've done. I was part-time for a few years, that freaked me out because I was raised on that whole be prepared in case of divorce. So I went back full time. And then I got divorced a few years later. I have my dad to thank for teaching me to always be ready to support yourself.

    I know it's working with DD, 16, she saves for things she really wants, she will never, ever pay retail. She is a really savvy shopper. She is so driven to go to a good college and then an Ivy for her MBA. Seeing as her mom is just recently on disability, I have no idea how to make that happen, nor could I have even when working. I taught her about 2 yrs at a community college, then transfer to the school she wants, preferably a state school, that all of this will minimize the debt she will take on. I do not think this particular lesson is going to sink in. Too bad, because she will likely have debt and that can last a very long time.

    I guess that's it!

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